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Subtext: - This story is based on two women who met and fall in love. If this disturbs you, then this is the wrong story for you. SORRY.
CHILD ABUSE ALERT: - There is child abuse mentioned throughout this story. I believe that child abuse can really affect a child's character and self-esteem later on in life and I felt this was an important part of the story. If you don't like reading about this, then please go and find another story.
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Episode 1: - Spotlight Part 1
The night closed in around her as she tried to push the memories away. The moonlight focusing on the figure tossing and turning in the bed.
"I am asking you girl. Did you do it?" She shouted again, taking no notice of the young girl cowering in the corner, curled into a ball trying to protect herself for what she knew was coming.
"No." Came the quiet answer from the frightened young girl. "It was Samantha."
"Are you saying your sister did this?" Her mother shouted, pointing to the broken glass dish on the floor. The dish that lay shattered had been given to her mother on her 2nd wedding anniversary. It had turned out to be the last anniversary too. When there was no answer coming from the young girl her mother shouted again. "Jordan Llewellyn answer me this minute. Are you saying that Samantha broke my dish?"
"Yes." Jordan answered, knowing it was a mistake.
"So you're a liar as well as a vandal now are you?" The woman said, moving towards her quivering daughter. "You know what happens when you lie, don't you!"
She moved towards her, closer and closer until finally the pressure of her hand in Jordan's blonde hair was pulling her up. Jordan tried not to cry knowing it would prove to her mother that she was weak. This had happened so many times in her short 6 years that it wasn't a surprise anymore. It was like a well-rehearsed play. Catherine would drag Jordan over to the chair, lay her across her lap and then hit her until she cried out, begging her to stop. Then Catherine hit her a couple more times, just to remind her who was in charge.
Jordan readied herself for the blow that was coming, she felt the first one coming closer and closer and just as it was about to reach her, the figure in the bed jerked awake.
Jordan sat there trying to calm herself. The nightmares that had haunted her since she had turned sixteen seemed to be getting worse. Reliving the days of her youth wasn't the best way to get a good night sleep. In fact, she couldn't remember the last night she had slept a full night. She had seen the doctor about getting some sleeping tablets to help her sleep but he had referred her to a therapist. The therapist hadn't really been helpful. He told her that her sub conscience was bringing out everything that had happened to her as a child because she had shut it away for so long. Only through her dreams could she come to terms with what had happened.
'It doesn't make sleep any easier.' she thought with a shake of her head, before dropping back on her bed and trying to close her eyes again.
The rest of the night was a fitful sleep that usually made Jordan even more tired in the morning.
* * * * *
September 7th 1999
7.30 the following morning the alarm rang nice and loudly and Jordan immediately moved to turn it off. "Go away." She muttered before turning over again. Ten minutes later another alarm woke her up. "Can't I sleep in once?" she asked, loudly, knowing that no one could hear her. She lay in bed for a few minutes trying to wake herself up, knowing it wasn't going to do any good unless she actually got out of bed.
She managed to drag herself out of bed and into the shower at 8 'o' clock. 'Good thing I set two alarms in the morning.' She thought with a small smile. Living on her own had made her realize how hard she found it to get out of bed first thing in the morning. Without having to worry about being out of the house before her mother got up, Jordan had found it quite pleasant to stay in bed.
She had been living on her own since she was 16 and was grateful for that. The first 16 years of her life had been a hell that she wouldn't wish on anyone.
Luckily she had been accepted into a child protection scheme at 16 and she was allowed to move out into a council flat without having to worry about rent. The only thing she had to pay was her electric and phone bills and the support she got off the council helped with that. So she was able to put herself through college without having to worry about being thrown onto the streets.
Living on her own at 16 had taken some getting used too. Only having to worry about herself, not making sure Samantha was ready for school and her lunch had been fixed. Not having to worry about what lie Samantha was going to tell to get her into trouble again. She had to learn to cook pretty quickly because she didn't want to starve and she had to get herself more motivated in the mornings. Knowing that there wasn't anyone there to tell her to get her butt out of bed meant that she was more than willing to just stay in bed and not bother going to college. But she had told herself a long time ago that she wasn't going to be like that. She wanted to do well in her life and staying in bed wasn't going to achieve that.
At 8.45 Jordan was making her way down to her car and was heading to college.
* * * * *
It was her first day back at college and she was nervous. This was her second year and she knew everyone that was going to be there but she was still nervous. It didn't matter how long she had known her friends she was still nervous and shy around them. It was a pain sometimes because it meant she wasn't as willing to go out with her friends as many people would be. She was happy to just stay in and study or chat on her computer to the friends she had on the net.
"Good morning, Jordan." A familiar voice came from behind her.
Jordan turned to spot a smiling Emma behind her. "Hey Stranger, it's nice to see you again."
"Yeah what happened to you over the holidays? We hardly ever saw you." Emma asked. Sometimes she thought she was finally breaking through the barriers that Jordan had put up around herself but then she realized just how far away from that she actually was. Jordan was the most self-conscious person she had ever known. She was ashamed of herself more than she would admit to anyone and it hurt to see her like it.
Jordan had the greatest ability to love and to be loved, but she refused to let anyone in. Thinking if she wasn't happy with herself, how could anyone else be happy with her. Granted Jordan wasn't the prettiest girl in the world but trying to tell her that looks didn't matter was like trying to tell the river to stop running. It wouldn't happen. Having been turned down and turned away so many times in her life she finally give up and closed her heart away from everyone. Even when a friend of hers had asked Jordan out last year, Jordan had tried to get out of him what he wanted. She couldn't believe that just maybe he actually liked her.
"Oh you know me," Jordan said, breaking Emma out of her thoughts. "I stayed in a did some writing. Decorated the flat and finally got enough money together to buy a new carpet for the living room.
"That took you nearly two months?" Emma sighed, she knew exactly why Jordan hadn't been around over the holidays. She figured if she didn't push herself onto the friends she already had, they wouldn't get fed up with her and then tell her to get lost.
"No but I had things to do you know. I was helping out at the shelter a lot. It was really good." Jordan admitted. The homeless shelter Jordan had worked in for over a year had been a godsend to her. She met younger kids who had run away from abusive parents and she had helped them come to terms with what had happened to them. 'Why can't I come to terms with what happened to me then?' she asked herself with a mental sigh. 'You know what the therapist said. Dealing with other people's problems is easier than having to deal with your own.' She reminded herself.
"Well that's all right then. As long as you aren't turning into a recluse." Emma regretted the words as soon as they left her mouth. 'Dammit Emma, you can be so stupid sometimes.' Jordan had suffered some stick off a couple of the students last year about being the recluse of Canesford College. She had tried to shrug it off but Jordan wasn't the type of person who could not take notice of what others were saying about her. She tried to ignore it but she had found that what they were saying was being made worse by her inability to mix with others.
Jordan just smiled at Emma before heading into class.
* * * * *
They had to wait for ten minutes before Jon their tutor turned up. He had been very supportive of Jordan over the last couple of years and he had seen in her a great potential that many people never got to see. Jordan was a musician and a very good one too. People only saw how talented musically she was, they didn't see the mind that was behind it all. The music she wrote had the power to move people in a way that was unusual for someone so young and inexperienced. Jon had listened to most of the songs she had written and he had tried to convince her to sing them in the Performance Workshop held every Friday but she had refused, saying she didn't think she was good enough.
Sometimes Jon had just wanted to slap her across the head and tell her she was good enough to be playing in a small drama studio and a big Rock 'n' Roll venue but he knew she wouldn't have listened to him anyway.
When Jon arrived he smiled at everyone and began the class. Noticing once again how far away from the rest of the group Jordan sat, he shook his head sadly. It was such a sad waste to see someone with the ability to love and be loved that Jordan did unable to mix with the friends she had been with for over a year and he found himself silently cursing the woman who had brought the wonderful teenager to this.
Jon set the work for them all and looked around as they got started. All of them chatting among themselves. All except for Jordan.
"Jordan I would like to speak with you at the end of the class please." Jon's voice startled Jordan, who had been concentrating on her work.
She nodded her head before returning to her work, she didn't stop until the end of the lesson.
Jordan waited patiently at her seat until Jon sad bye to the final student and he turned back to her. He noticed she looked nervous and he smiled to assure her she wasn't in trouble.
She smiled back before Jon started speaking. "Jordan, how long have you been here?"
Jordan frowned at the question. "Altogether this is my third year." Having done the first diploma as the stepping stone to the National Diploma she was doing now.
"How long have you known most of the students here?" Jon asked, raising an eyebrow and sitting opposite the young woman.
"A few of them two years. Most of them a year." Jordan admitted, realizing where this conversation was going. 'Always looking out for me, huh.'
"So why are you still sitting over here on your own?" The raised eyebrow he received made him smile.
"I feel more comfortable on my own." Jordan admitted, sadly. It wasn't really the way she wanted to live her life, but this was the way it was.
"Yeah but is this the way to break into the music profession?" Jon asked. "Having a fear of mixing with people isn't going to get you very far in this business, you know that."
"I know but that doesn't make it any easier." Jordan admitted. "I want to be able to mix with people, Jon. I really do. It's hard though when you think like I do. Always wondering what everyone really thinks of me. Are they just being nice to me because I look so lonely? What do they really see when they look at me?"
"What they think of you shouldn't matter Jordan. What you think of yourself is the most important opinion you should worry about." Jon reminded her. "What did the group think of you when you started here?"
Jordan thought back to those days with a smile. Everything seemed so long ago now. It was only three years though. "They thought I was a snob and that I thought I was too good to mix with the likes of them."
"But they got to know you and they don't think that anymore. Do they?" Jon looked at her, he already knew the answer to that, he just wanted to see what she said.
"I don't think so." Jordan told him quietly.
"Jordan you need to be willing to let people in. You have a wonderful personally that most people fall in love with. You are sensitive, caring and have a lot of love to give. Most people don't get to see that side of you." Jon told her honestly. "That's not fair to you or to them."
"I don't know if I can do that, Jon. I'll try though." Jordan said, sounding determined to try and do it.
"That is the only thing I can ask for, Jordan." Jon smiled at her. "Now get out of here and I'll see you for theory tomorrow."
"Ok." With that Jordan picked up her things and made her way to the door.
The red haired figure sitting alone in the small trailer looked completely lost in the work she was reading. Jessica Adams was reading through another script. Since she had appeared in a few of the top TV programs as a guest star and had landed the role of Amy Johnson in the show Plain Lazy, the young actress had been asked to read more scripts than she could possibly imagine. Just a few months ago she was an actress that nobody had ever heard of, struggling to make ends meet and practically begging for some one to hire her.
Her big break had come when she was spotted on School Daze, where she was a guest star. Franklin Casper had called her agent Emily Smith and had asked her to audition for the role of Amy Johnson. Plain Lazy was a musical about a group of teenagers who form a band and name themselves Plain Lazy. Amy Johnson is the brains behind the band and she is also the lead singer. Jessica hadn't really thought about going into musicals until the offer had come and Emily and her parents had told her she would be stupid to turn it down. So she had accepted and now she was glad she had. She was having a ball with the rest of the cast. Franklin had also arranged for a couple of critics and big name movie people to be in the audience on opening night. They had loved her.
This is was the chance she had been waiting for. She had been approached on the night by a small filming company who wanted to do a film called Popularity. They had explained a little about the film and she had agreed to read the script. She was so far fascinated with it. It seemed to tell the story of her life. A young actress needed work and she was willing to do almost anything to get the break she felt she deserved. The story line was enthralling. She was also fascinated with the fact that Julia Roberts and Kelly Packard had turned down the opportunity due to schedule clusters. Jessica figured the real reason was the fact that it was only a small company with very little resources. This was their chance to get their name known as well.
As Jess sat reading the script there was a knock on the door to her trailer and she quickly put the script away before moving towards the door. At the door stood a tall man, with graying brown hair. He stood almost head and shoulders taller than her and he could be very intimidating when he wanted to be. "Good afternoon, Franklin." She smiled up at him.
"Good morning, sweetie." He smiled back at her. "I wanted to talk to you about doing the company a favor on Friday."
Jess motioned for Franklin to come in and he had to duck his head to get through the door. He followed her in and sat down opposite her. "What's up?" She asked.
"Well the company are taking the show on the road. Just to do a couple of songs from the show and we want you there." Franklin admitted. He had been so used to working with talent that got there noses stuck in the air when the company organized things without their knowledge that he figured it would be better to ask Jess first. They couldn't afford their star to get upset and walk out now.
"Where too?" Jess asked, surprised that Franklin had asked, she thought it would have been an order instead.
"It's at Canesford College. They have one of the best success records for Performing Arts in Britain. They've turned out some of the best performers in the Country. Both music and drama." Franklin told her. "Plain Lazy being one of their major successes. Along with Tom Jones, the young actor, Sam Marshall and of course Dean Johnson."
Plain Lazy had come out in 1995 and had taken the pop world by storm, there were rumors going around the cast of the show that they were going to come to see the show one day in the week. They had been on tour in America when it opened two weeks before and they couldn't get back. It would be exciting to know that the people who were the story were going to be there.
"I think that's a great idea." Jess admitted. "It's a great way to gave back to the college after all their help. You might even spot the next big thing as well."
Franklin smiled. "Well that is also the added bonus." He admitted. "I keep in touch with the tutors there and we often talk about promising students and they have three promising students. Two actresses and one musician. They are apparently the best workers, easy to work with and wonderful at what they do."
Jess nodded her head. "So it could prove beneficial to go."
"Most definitely." Franklin smiled.
"Well then I shall be there." Jess told him.
Franklin stood up and hugged her. "Thank you, Jess. We will also be catching one of the Performance Workshops they hold every Friday so we'll be keeping the eye out."
"Ok then." Jess hugged him back before he excused himself and left. Everything was working out great for her at the moment and Jess wished that it could last forever. So many people come and go in the world of Show biz and she knew that all she had at that moment could be gone tomorrow but she was determined to enjoy what she had at the moment. Thinking about the conversation she had shared with Franklin she shook her head at the head of Movies and Theatre before picking up her script and continuing to read.
* * * * *
It seemed like hours later that there was a knock on the door to her trailer and Jess reluctantly put down the script she was still reading. She looked at the time and noticed it was 5.30, time to go to wardrobe. She walked over to the door and opened it to be greeted by Summer, the wardrobe assistant.
"Hi Jess, you're wanted over in wardrobe." She reminded her with a pat on her watch.
"Ok I'll be there now." Jess told her, before heading back into the trailer to get her bottle of water and heading over to the big building that had become the host to the biggest show of the year.
As she was being made up, Jess thought about where she was now and she realized that all though she had everything she wanted at the moment, there seemed to still be something missing. She couldn't put her finger on the feeling that seemed to be overwhelming her a few times lately, sometimes even with all the people she worked with she felt lonely, like there was a piece of her missing. That feeling had been brought back full force that morning when she had received a letter off her sister back home in Sarasota, telling her she was finally getting married.
Hi there, Sis. How is everything going over there. It must pretty lonely being so far away from your family and friends. It's a good job you have Auntie Connie and Uncle Dewi there with you. Mom was talking to them on the phone the other day and they said you had settled in ok.
I am writing to tell you the most amazing news. Brad proposed to me yesterday. I have never felt so loved and alive as I did at that moment. I agreed immediately. We have even set the date. It's going to be in December. December the 4th to be exact. We talked it over with Mom and Dad and they are going to try and book the church down the road from us for the wedding. Even if we can't get married there, we will try around and then when all else fails we will have the wedding outside.
I am so excited. I hope you can get back for the wedding. I want you as my Chief Bridesmaid. I need you there at my wedding.
Mom and Dad tell me to send you their love and to tell you that they miss you. It's strange having you so many thousands of miles away. Are you enjoying it in Wales? I hope you are. I also hope you've made some friends over there. If you haven't I'll have to come over and sort you out.
Anyway hon, I have to get going. Brad and I are going to look at some wedding dresses.
Lots of Love
'Everything is working out for Laura as well, which is great but why does her happiness make me feel so sad.' Jess thought sadly as she waited quietly for wardrobe to finish with her so she could get prepared to go on.
Jordan sat in front of her keyboard waiting for the words to come to her. The tune was bouncing around in her head playing itself over and over again. She had already written the music down making sure she wouldn't forget it. Now all she had to do was wait for the words.
Shortly afterwards the words started flowing and about an hour later the whole song was finished. She played it through once more, just to make sure it sounded complete and then she smiled at the feel and the texture of the piece. It was another composition for her assignment portfolio.
She was just finishing up when the phone rang. Looking at her watch she headed to the phone. "Hello?"
"Hi." Emma's voice came down the line.
"Hey. So how did Studio Comp. go?" Jordan asked, as she sat down next to the phone.
"It was ok. Did some work on my song and got a bit of gossip." Emma told her with a little chuckle. The one thing Emma was always good at was getting gossip.
"Really. What's that?" Jordan wasn't really interested because she wasn't into gossiping about everyone else, but sometimes the things that Emma knew where interesting.
"You know Jessica Adams?" Emma knew very well that Jordan knew that name very well.
"The actress?" Jordan asked, quietly.
"Yeah the American actress that is over here doing the show in the Millennium Center." Emma told her with a secret smile. 'Jordan, girl. You are going to love this piece of news.'
"Yeah. What about her?" Jordan asked, trying to sound uninterested.
"Well the production company doing the play is coming to the college. Jessica Adams is coming with them." Emma finally told her, listening expectantly for Jordan's reply.
Jordan didn't know what to say. She had dreamt of Jess Adams for as long as Jess had been in the world of TV. Jordan still remembered the first time she had seen the red-haired bombshell from Sarasota, Florida. She had been watching a half an hour comedy show called Scoot based on five friends, Scott, Catherine, Oliver, Olive and Trevor, hence their initials spelt scoot. Jess had played Julie Rothchild - Scott's girl of the week in one of the episodes and Jordan had been hooked on her ever since.
"Jessica Adams is coming to our college?" Jordan repeated more as reassurance than a question.
"Yeah on Friday. They will be doing a couple of scenes from their show and they are also going to watch Performance Workshop. They're looking for some new stars." Emma told her.
"Really." Jordan was surprised. It wasn't very often big companies like Movies and Theater, MAT, came to colleges looking for talent. "They'll have a few actors to choose from." One of the things Canesford College was known for was the talent it unleashed on the Country, sometimes even the world. Some of the top stars that had come from Canesford were Tom Jones, a young actor who was tipped to be the next Tom Cruise, Sam Marshall another fine young actor who by the age of 23 had been cast in 7 different movies since leaving Canesford. The biggest of all was Dean Johnson, the young singer who was taking the world by storm. 'And to think I used to go to college with him.' Used to go through her mind every time she saw the young man on the top ten.
"Yeah that's true." Emma's voice brought Jordan back from the land of dreams. "I suppose it depends on what they want.
"Yeah." Jordan agreed, running through a list of names that would attract attention from this sort of crowd. "I'm supposed to be performing on Friday."
"Really? What are you doing?" Emma asked. Jordan wasn't the type of person who felt comfortable performing in front of people, even though she was good and she wanted it to be her profession.
"I was going to do The Rose but if they are coming I don't think it will be a good idea." Jordan knew she was backing out but she knew that if she performed and she spotted Jess Adams in the crowd, she would freeze.
"Jordan you can't back out now. You know it won't go down well if you do back out." Emma reminded her. The tutors had put their feet down with people who arranged to perform and then pulled out at the last minute without a good excuse.
"I know." Jordan admitted, reluctantly.
"Well you just spend the next three days getting yourself geared up. It's about time you showed everyone here how well you can sing."
"So everyone keeps telling me but you know how nervous I get." Jordan reminded her.
"I know but you need to get over it." Emma told her, before remembering she had planned to go out and she needed to get ready. "Anyway, hon. I have to get going. I'll see you in college in the morning."
"Yep 10.30." Jordan agreed. "See you tomorrow."
With that they both hung up. Tomorrow was going to be a pretty boring day for everyone. Having just started back, everything was still in the experimental stage, sorting out timetable changes, splitting the group into smaller groups for some of the lessons. Jordan was looking forward to actually getting back into her work.
Jordan checked the time and made her way to the kitchen to make herself a meal before settling down to do some writing.
To Be Continued...